CUT BANK - Gus Grant Jackson, 86, of Cut Bank, died of complications from lung cancer Friday, June 8, at Benefis.
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Viewing is from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday at Whitted Funeral Chapel. Rosary is 7.p.m. Tuesday at St. Margaret's Catholic Church. Funeral mass is 11 a.m. Wednesday at St. Margarets Catholic Church. Burial with military honors to follow in the Jackson family burial area at Crown Hill Cemetery. Reception to follow at Moose Lodge.
Gus (Sunny) was born on March 28, 1926, in Babb to Augustus and Rose Jackson. He was the youngest of five, with three sisters, Amy (Jones), Violet (Hensley), and Mabel (Damron) and brother William. He spent his early years in Babb and on a ranch near the Sweetgrass Hills. The family moved to Cut Bank, where he attended Cut Bank High School.
He joined the Army Air Corp in July, 1944, and attended aerial gunnery school in Las Vegas. He received an American Theater of Operations Service Ribbon, Good Conduct Medal and a Victory Medal. He was Honorably Discharged as a Sergeant in February 1946. While attending a service dance at Seville Flats, he met his future wife, Margie Mae McGovern. They were married on Sept. 10, 1948. They were blessed with three children: Natalie, Nadine and David.
As a young father, Gus would make holidays special times for his kids. Christmas always had a Santa Claus who came with presents. At Easter, he would take them to Ben Franklin to pick out chicks and ducklings, and would film the egg hunt. He would have his own fireworks display on the Fourth of July, and on Halloween he would wear scary masks when kids came trick or treating. Every summer he took his family on vacation. They saw Disneyland, the World Fair, Yellowstone Park, San Diego Zoo, and various theme parks and haunted towns in the Northwest. He loved to camp, fish and explore. He had a special love for Glacier National Park and the surrounding area of Babb and St. Mary. Gus wanted to see the world. He made it to Canada, Mexico, Germany, Ireland, England and France.
Gus worked at the Union Oil Refinery in Cut Bank for 42 years. After retiring at 62, he and Margie built a log cabin on Lower St. Mary Lake and spent every summer of his last years there. For many years, Gus and Margie spent their winters in Arizona in their RV.
Gus is survived by his wife Margie of Cut Bank; daughters Natalie Jackson of St. Mary and Nadine Akkerman of Great Falls; grandchildren Jerry Jackson and Jesse DuBray of Cut Bank, Terry Akkerman of Buhl, Idaho, Chris Akkerman of Sheridan, Wyo., Kalled and Amy Jaha and Nate Larson of Great Falls, and Jon, Erik and Kevyn Larson of Missoula; and nieces Rosalie Jones of Rochester, N.Y. and Kathy Thixton of Indianapolis, Ind.
He was preceded in death by his parents; all of his siblings; son David N. Jackson; grandson David G. Jackson; and great-grandson Kaden McCowen.
Condolences may be posted online at www.whittedfuneralchapel.com and/or www.gftribune.com/obituaries.
Published in Great Falls Tribune on June 11, 2012